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Battery Backup for Sump Pump

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7 replies to this topic

#1 of 8 OFFLINE   Chris Huber

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Posted March 04 2005 - 04:36 PM


Would this be able to handle a Sump Pump if power went out and the pump needed to come on for maybe 2-3 quick shots?

I thought it'd be a good idea instead of buying expensive backups just for sumps.

#2 of 8 OFFLINE   Dean Cooper

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Posted March 04 2005 - 08:37 PM

Hard to say without knowing anything about your pump, check the label on the motor for a VA rating as there very well may be one. If it’s in kW the simple conversion is 1kW to 1kVA. If the rating is under 280VA it should have enough jam to pull the pump over.

#3 of 8 OFFLINE   Todd Hochard

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Posted March 05 2005 - 04:31 AM

I'm thinking no. My sump pump has a decent sized cable on it, but no tag rating visible. If I had to guess, it likely draws 500+W when running, and 2-3x that to start.
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#4 of 8 OFFLINE   Michael Warner

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Posted March 05 2005 - 05:12 AM

When we had that big power outage a few summers ago I tried using my UPS system on the sump pump but it was no go. Just not enough juice for that type of load. Most folks use marine battery backups on their sump pumps. I figured that a battery backup wouldn't be much help if the pump itself were to go kaputt so I just added an old manual bilge pump I had left over from my sailing days to the cistern in case of emergency. Having to manually crank it every few hours doesn't sound like much fun but at least I'm covered for an eventuality.
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#5 of 8 OFFLINE   Scott Merryfield

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Posted March 05 2005 - 09:08 AM

Instead of a battery backup sump pump, why not look into a water-powered one? This only works if you have water provided by a utility company (no well water). Water pressure turns a turbine. We had one installed after experiencing a flooded basement due to a power failure. My neighbor's battery-powered one failed on him because the battery wouldn't hold a charge.

#6 of 8 OFFLINE   Jack Spencer

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Posted March 05 2005 - 10:55 AM

Most cheap UPSs do not output a pure sine wave when on battery power and will not work properly with a water pump. APC's SmartUPS series is a higher quality UPS that DOES put out a pure sine wave. I recommend buying only APC, and contacting APC to find out if the model UPS you want will drive your water pump. They will tell you and from my experience are honest.

#7 of 8 OFFLINE   Justin Lane

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Posted March 05 2005 - 11:22 AM

Watts (W) and Volt-Amps (VA) are not the same thing. A VA is a measurment of complex power (S=VI*) while a watt is a measurement of real power (P=VI*power factor). When manufacturers give you a VA rating, it is calculated with the assumption the the phase angle of the current is in phase with the phase angle of the voltage. This is almost never the case, as the current phase angle lags the voltage due to the large number of inductive loads found throughout the power system as well as in your home.

As for the particular UPS you have selected, it won't be able to handle all but the smallest sump pumps. A typical 1/3 HP sump is about a 250 W load. You would probably get a single pumping before the UPS is drained, if it would even start the pump's motor. When an inductive load is turned on, there is an in-rush current, which this UPS probably is not designed to handle as well.

You should take a look at this system offered by Sears. My father has used it for quite some time, and it saved him a couple times during power outages.

Sear's Battery Operated System

Of course you are getting to the price range where you could buy a small generator for outages.


#8 of 8 OFFLINE   Chris Huber

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Posted March 20 2005 - 10:02 AM

I just got a APC SmartUPS 1400 for free! Will that work?


Will this one work?

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